27 June 2010

Cherries at New Era Farms

Carli and I went to the farm co-op again to put in our day of work for the month. I didn't think I would be getting any vegetables, fruit -- or for that matter, bread. We went to the farm and got there at 7a (I got up at 5.30a, wow!) and weeded the potatoes, tomatoes and lettuce. It was a nice, non-stressful work day. Last time we did a lot of shoveling and wheel barrowing, which takes a lot more arm strength (which I have very little of) than weeding. I got to use the stirrup hoe which is my friend in the garden and makes everything go quickly.

Then we picked loganberries. I had never had them before but let me say -- holy Moses they are tart! So they're great for pies (which I literally just took out of the oven) that are not too sweet, not too tart, just right. I prefer pies that are not very sweet so they sound like a good filling to me.

So after the loganberries it was about time to wrap up the work day and C (the lady farmer) said we should go and pick some cherries because the trees were bursting. And she really wasn't kidding.

So we set out to pick cherries and they were delicious.

The cherry trees were right next to the cow pasture. They are a Mexican breed of bull but I'm not sure what specifically.

We are hoping to be part of the butchering of one of these cows in the fall. It will be my first time butchering an animal and I'm very interested to find out what my reaction will be. I am very happy to be able to see the cows as they grow up and that they are able to roam free in a large pasture. They are fed well both with grass and an additional grain feed. I will be sad if we aren't able to be part of the meat co-op because I would love to have the experience (whether I feel faint or not).

This is Chap in the lettuce patch. We will not be eating him because he serves other purposes around the farm. And also because Americans don't eat dog.

We picked some more lettuce and it has been a delight enjoying the lettuce. Its very good and not too bitter as is very easy to do to greens. Apparently the trick is to water the greens after you pick them.


Then later that we went on an Unimproved Road Bike Ride which was part of Pedalpalooza (earlier this week we went on the Epic Pizza Ride and previous to that was the WNBR). It was much shorter and tamer than we all would have liked but who's to know? We all thought it sounded great but it turned out slightly disappointing. Joel and I were aware of 75% of the roads we went on (and regularly traverse them) and were hoping to find new trails/roads, but alas, to no avail.

After that we went with three other riders, who were equally disappointed, up to St. John's after a very abrupt ride end. We found a bar called Plews which carried all local brews and was decidedly very pro-marijuana. Reggae posters lined the walls and a newsletter pile at the front of the store called Rolling Stoned sat by the door. Posters for Hempstalk lined the back wall and the whole bar had a feeling of a stoner kid's basement with used couches in unflattering floral patterns and thrift store lamps. The whole bar was dark except for two shaded windows at the front and the dim lamps. It was an altogether fine experience but a very stylized bar that seemed to want to draw a particular kind of crowd.

After we went to the Marley-infused bar we rode our bikes in the vicinity of our friends' new house. They were having a housewarming party but had left our directions at home (along with our water) so we rode around until I got the address from another friend attending the party and we finally found the right street, the right house and our friends. On the way there we rode along Willamette Boulevard/the Willamette Bluffs which has an amazing view of both the City and Mt. Hood.

I pulled over on the opposite side of the street from Joel and traffic was bad, so I took a photo of Joel while I waited.

It has been a really lovely weekend thus far with Joel having both saturday *and* sunday off which is a rarity at our house. We have also made the move of asking one of our roommates to leave. We will hopefully be having a good friend of ours move in with us which is very exciting indeed. Things are on the up and up.

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